Diet Preparation and...

Diet preparation is vital to the long-term success of your weight loss plan - and chocolate!  Or whatever treat tickles your fancy (read further for that tasty tidbit).

It should be an exciting time because you are taking charge of your life and making positive change. That said, attempting to alter routines and habits developed over years can be difficult.

With so many diet plans to choose from, selecting the right one to suit your personal situation is essential.  Good news is there are certain things you can do in preparation to make your dieting journey a little easier.   

  • Choose a diet that reflects your lifestyle and personal tastes.
  • If possible before starting your new diet, take some measurements; weight, waist and hips - photos if you’re brave.
  • See your doctor, they may want to run tests before and during your weight loss to monitor your health.  This is the perfect chance to discuss your plans and any concerns you may have - especially important if you have a chronic condition or are on any regular prescribed medication.
  • During this time begin to take note of the foods you currently enjoy while gradually weaning yourself off favourite processed foods that may contain high levels of fats, sugars or salt.
  • Including more fresh nutritious options into your current eating habits will help for a smoother transition.

Thankfully we now have unlimited information at our fingertips to help with our diet preparation but be cautious about where you source your information.  Entering into a new eating style armed with a better understanding of exactly what we are consuming and all the bad - and good - habits we have formed  may just be the kick we need.

Be sure to write down any critical information or topics you want to follow up on, this not only helps with recall but may help you make better informed decisions.

A well planned diet takes a lot of guess
work out of your day

By limiting choices and in turn decisions, selecting the wrong option is less likely. It’s often a good idea to plan meals a week ahead of time.  You can remain flexible to a certain degree but by taking the time to prepare flavoursome nutritious meals and snacks in advance you will avoid the hunger pangs and the 'there's nothing for me to eat, I know I'll order a pizza' excuse.

Oh and never shop on an empty stomach otherwise you may find yourself giving in to temptation.  Shop with list in hand, and prevent the dreaded impulse buys. 

Tip: Shop online

Shopping online is a great way to leisurely plan and purchase for a week ahead, remember if it’s not in the fridge, pantry or freezer - you can't eat it! 

Whether it’s the cabbage soup, heart healthy, low carb or no-carb diet you are considering, you’ll need some contingencies in place to safeguard you when temptation and distraction strikes - and trust me, it will happen.

Plan ahead to beat temptation when it strikes

Despite your best intentions to only eat at specified times, or to avoid all so-called 'bad' foods, distractions can easily trap you.  If you follow a contingency plan you will be less inclined to fall off the wagon.

It may be as simple as distracting your attention with a glass of water or a short walk, or having convenient ‘appropriate’ snacks on hand to calm your appetite before your mind begins to wander.  

That chocolate thingy I mentioned earlier

And if that is not enough and you absolutely must have chocolate - or whatever 'naughty' treats you like - then eat it.  

Yes that's right, I said eat it!  

Just don't eat a whole family sized block and don't do it every day.  The idea behind this is that if you deny yourself too often, you will not only fall off the wagon; rather you will come to a complete stop, jump off, unhitch the horses and run a mile in the other direction.

Diet preparation should also build anticipation

Prepare your mindset.  

  • Stick a photo on the fridge of the type of body you would like to have or a picture of your old self in healthier, happier days.  Imagine how great you’re going to look and feel, and how healthy you’ll be!
  • Think about making new and exciting meals, experimenting with exotic flavours and leaving old boring well-worn recipes behind.
  • Maybe it’s the perfect excuse to treat yourself with a new appliance like a juicer, a new non-stick pan, new workout gear.
  • Search for some new calorie tracking and menu planning apps for your smartphone!
  • Watch a motivational video.  Personally, I love watching Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead by Joe Cross.  Google it, you'll love it.

Diet preparation is about safeguarding yourself, from... well 'you'.  Laying the foundations for positive change is essential for building new pathways.

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